3D Orthogonally Woven 3DMAT Quartz Materials Developed by Bally Ribbon Mills and NASA Ames Research Center Named NASA Government Invention of the Year

Bally Ribbon Mills (BRM), designer and manufacturer of highly specialized engineered woven fabrics, announced the 3D Orthogonally woven 3DMAT Quartz Material for the Orion Multi-Purpose Crew Vehicle (MPCV) compression pads, developed through their partnership with NASA, has been named the 2023 NASA Government Invention of the Year. The award demonstrates NASA Ames Research Center’s commitment to cutting edge leadership and technology development for the nation. BRM and NASA efforts are a great example of NASA partnering with an American small business with a unique specialized technological capability that will further current and future exploration plans.

Compression pads serve as the interface between the crew module and service module of the Orion MPCV and carry the structural loads generated during launch, space operation, pyroshock separation of the two modules. The compression pads also serve as ablative TPS withstanding the high heating of earth reentry. 3DMAT leverages NASA’s investment in woven materials for the Orion compression pads that combines the weaving of quartz yarns with resin transfer molding.

The 3DMAT technology has helped BRM introduce 3D orthogonal woven materials to a range of new applications.

David Bentley Announced as Divisional VP at Muirhead Avionics

AMETEK MRO Muirhead Avionics, a provider of aviation MRO) services, has appointed David Bentley as vice president and business unit manager in the UK. He was previously responsible for AMETEK MRO’s businesses in the American midwest.

With over two decades of MRO experience from previous senior roles at Dowty/Smiths/GE and NORDAM, Bentley’s focus is firmly centred on operational expenditure, and he will bring this expertise to the fore as he joins Muirhead Avionics at a dynamic time in the Company’s history. “The Muirhead Avionics business has an impressive 73-year history,” he says. “Our customer base is robust and we have experience on more than 7,000 avionic control components over a wide range of the world’s aircraft types including: instruments/indicators, weather and mission radar, audio and cockpit controls, ground support equipment, repair management, navigation and communication aids, flight data & cockpit recorder analysis and repair.”

AMETEK MRO Avtech will shortly be relocating its Florida business to the UK and this will fall under Bentley’s remit.  “This integration will significantly enhance our capabilities to include IRUs (Inertial Refence Units), MCDUs (Multi-function Control & Display Units), autopilot and cockpit displays,” he explains.

The Muirhead Avionics facility will soon be moving from its current location to a large high-tech new facility close to London Heathrow. The additional space will not only house increased repair capabilities but offer further scope to expand. Bentley is keen to observe that the opportunity to streamline processes and broaden the customer base is high on his list of priorities.

“We aim to solve our customers’ requirements through continuous improvements that save costs via our ‘repair versus replace’ philosophy. Muirhead Avionics already has multiple approvals from the world’s largest OEMs to repair their components and as we look to further enhance what we can offer we will search for opportunities to grow organically and through acquisitions.”

Muirhead Avionics already has a strong reputation in the commercial sector but is looking to extend its specialist MRO services in the military arena. “Supporting legacy aircraft is our core competence, together with ARC (Approved Repair Center) partnerships,” concludes Bentley. “I look forward to meeting these new challenges and to writing the next chapter with the team at Muirhead Avionics.”

Duncan Aviation Delivers Falcon 2000 with Full Hydrographic Cabinetry

Duncan Aviation Delivers Falcon 2000 with Full Hydrographic Cabinetry

During a recent 2C/4C inspection, Duncan Aviation delivered a fully refurbished Falcon 2000 with a freshly painted exterior and all-new interior featuring cabinets with hydrographic finishes. In addition, the aircraft received Collins Pro Line 21 avionics upgrade, Collins Venue CMS upgrade, Gogo AVANCE L5, HUD removal, GH-39000 Electronic Standby Instrument System, LASEREF IV Inertial Reference System, and Dual USB ports.

When the aircraft arrived at Duncan Aviation’s facility in Battle Creek, Michigan, the interior material color pallet had a lot of deep browns with solid textures making the interior feel heavy and dark. The owner’s vision was to lighten up the interior and update it with a contemporary look highlighted with unique design elements.

“To achieve the owner’s vision of a modern interior, we gave the cabinets a new look that can only be achieved through hydrographics,” said Heather Pridemore, Duncan Aviation lead designer. “This process is becoming very desirable and was executed by the team at the Battle Creek facility with great detail and precision, creating a stunning natural wood look.”

Tiffany Buschini, Duncan Aviation Completions and Modifications sales rep, provided the owner with a hands-on demonstration of the hydrographic application as part of the design specification process so he would fully appreciate the detail and quality of the finished product.

“He became 100% on board,” said Buschini. “Battle Creek is using a mechanized arm that makes it possible to dip large monuments. The owner was ecstatic with the result.”

To create a personal, one-of-a-kind feeling for the owner, the Duncan Aviation team added unique elements throughout the aircraft, giving it that “special touch.” The lower sidewalls feature a full-depth, hand-tipped leather, and luxury vinyl flooring was installed in the entry and lavatory, balancing a high-end look with ease of maintenance.

Pridemore credits the amazing results to talented and supportive teams. “Together, we create new and inspiring designs,” said Pridemore. “This Falcon 2000 turned out beautifully, with so many subtle details, creating a unique masterpiece.”

Cancer Survivors Return to Skies Over Montana

Cancer Survivors Return to Skies Over Montana

Summit Aviation’s Annual Cancer Survivor Flight Camp returned for its 9th year in July. The camp was begun in 2014 by Summit Aviation’s president, Ben Walton, to help young cancer survivors move on after treatment.

During this camp, which happens the week of July 17-21, four young adult cancer survivors — Andrew, Sophi, Hunter and Courtney- will take to the skies over Montana for a five-day flying adventure. Summit holds the camp out of its headquarters at the Bozeman Yellowstone International Airport. Held in partnership with Eagle Mount Bozeman, the camp’s participants are selected through Eagle Mount’s Big Sky Kids program. Throughout the course of the week each camper will accumulate over ten hours of actual flight time in Summit’s state-of-the-art Diamond training aircraft. “The campers are always amazed by how much actual flying they get to do,” says Walton.

The annual Flight Camp is completely donor funded with meals being supplied by local restaurants and grocery stores. “It’s really cool to see the community come together to support this program,” said Walton. “It takes a lot of very generous people to make this happen every year and it’s really exciting to see everyone come together to make it possible.”

In addition to their daily flights around Montana, the campers get to spend the afternoons exploring rarely seen areas of the airport like the air traffic control tower, FBOs, private hangars and commercial airline operations. The week culminates in a cross-country flight to Driggs, Idaho, during which the campers get to fly over Yellowstone National Park and see the Grand Tetons.

For these young cancer survivors Flight Camp is much more than just an adventure camp. As past camper Martín (2021) put it, many of our campers are “struggling to find their place in the world” after so much uncertainty. For those who have had to live just one day at a time, the future is an ambiguous prospect. Flight Camp opens a whole new world of opportunity for these young survivors. Suddenly anything is possible again. If they can fly a plane, they can do anything! That powerful realization leaves each participant with a new sense of self, achievement, and confidence in their abilities.

HAECO Appoints Richard Sell as New CEO

HAECO Appoints Richard Sell as New CEO

HAECO announced the appointment of Richard Sell as its new chief executive officer. He assumed the role on July 1, 2023, succeeding Frank Walschot, who will remain as an advisor to the company.
With 20 years of leadership experience in a diverse range of industries and corporate structures, Sell brings a wealth of expertise to his new role. He most recently served as CEO of Hong Kong Aero Engine Services Ltd. (HAESL), a 50/50 joint venture between HAECO and Rolls-Royce, and as a director of Taikoo (Xiamen) Aircraft Engineering Company Ltd. and Goodrich Asia-Pacific Ltd.

Sell held management positions with several Swire group companies, including Cathay Pacific Airways, Swire Pacific, The China Navigation Company, Swire Energy Services and Swire Pacific Offshore in Hong Kong, Singapore, India and Europe. During this time, he gained experience in various sectors, including aviation, marine, retail and distribution, and was responsible for both wholly owned subsidiaries and joint ventures covering Hong Kong and the Chinese Mainland.

As the CEO of HAECO, Sell will be responsible for overseeing the group’s operations and business strategy, with a focus on driving safety, quality, and operational excellence to meet the needs of its diverse global customer base.

“I am delighted to join HAECO and lead this dynamic organization into its next phase of growth,” said Sell. “HAECO has an outstanding reputation for providing quality services and for its ‘can-do’ spirit. I am excited to work with the talented team to build on this legacy and to drive the company’s continued success.”

He holds a degree from the University of Leeds and has also attended INSEAD and Stanford University Graduate School of Business.

U.S. Air Force Selects FSI Defense for Training Systems Acquisition IV Multiple Award Contract

The U.S. Air Force Life Cycle Management Center (AFLCMC), Simulator Division, selected FSI Defense, a FlightSafety International company, as one of 37 companies awarded a position on a ten-year, $32.5 billion multiple-award, indefinite-delivery, indefinite-quantity (IDIQ) Training Systems Acquisition IV (TSA IV) contract.

FSI Defense is one of 18 large companies and 19 small companies chosen for the IDIQ contract. TSA IV provides the U.S. Air Force a streamlined, quick-response contracting vehicle to efficiently meet the demanding requirements of the AFLCMC by allowing pre-selected vendors the opportunity to bid on specific line items within a given task order.

“This contract award not only reinforces our position as a leader in the simulation and training community but also reflects the trust the U.S. Air Force has in FSI Defense,” said Dan Davis, FSI Defense president. “We look forward to exceeding expectations and continuing our long-lasting partnership with the AFLCMC,” continued Davis.

The TSA IV IDIQ encompasses complex aircrew simulations and training, maintenance, and system-specific training systems directly supporting warfighter training at operating locations worldwide.

Eaton and SIA Engineering to Form Component MRO JV in Malaysia

Eaton and SIA Engineering to Form Component MRO JV in Malaysia

Eaton and SIA Engineering Company have signed an agreement to form a component MRO joint venture (JV). The JV will inspect, test, repair, maintain, modify and overhaul Eaton-manufactured aircraft components installed on airframe and engine fuel systems and hydraulics systems.

The JV builds presence and service capacity for Eaton and SIAEC customers in the Asia Pacific region. Under the agreement, Eaton will hold a 51% equity stake in the JV, with SIAEC holding the remaining 49%. The initial issued and paid-up share capital will be USD 16 million. Eaton and SIAEC will each subscribe to the shares in cash and in proportion to their corresponding equity stake. The agreement and services to be provided are subject to the receipt of required regulatory approvals.

“The relationship with Eaton in Malaysia is strategic for SIAEC as we have been growing component capabilities and increasing the competitiveness of our component ‘Power-by-the-Hour’ product offering,” said Ng Chin Hwee, CEO of SIAEC. “This JV will be an important platform to build capabilities on new-generation aircraft and will complement our existing portfolio of engine and component JVs with other leading original equipment manufacturers.”

“This new venture will combine SIA Engineering Company’s experience and well-respected position in the region with Eaton’s global reach and existing customer base,” said Nanda Kumar, president, Aerospace Group, Eaton. “We look forward to building our regional presence to serve customers throughout the product lifecycle in this growing market.”

Airforms Receives PMA for Baffles for Cessna 172 B & C Models

Airforms Receives PMA for Baffles for Cessna 172 B & C Models

Airforms now offers FAA-PMA baffles for Cessna 172 B & C configurations as a replacement for your existing assemblies. These new baffles have undergone individual PMA approval and can be purchased as standalone units or as a complete set. The reinforced design ensures extended durability and reduces metal fatigue failures. Each baffle assembly has the option of either a bare metal finish or a powder coated finish which enhances corrosion resistance. Baffles are available with high-temp silicone seals that have a thin fiberglass center, or with the McFarlane premium cowl saver.

Airforms is leading in FAA-PMA approved engine baffles. They offer baffles for a wide range of Cessna 172 models and are continuously expanding their product line to ensure extensive coverage. With manufacturing operations based at the Airforms Center for Engine Baffle Excellence in Wasilla, AK, the company ensures excellent quality in all its baffles. Airforms has recently become a member of the McFarlane Aviation family of brands.

McFarlane Aviation is located in Baldwin City, Kansas, and is a leading provider of high-quality aircraft parts, accessories, and innovative solutions for general aviation. Each individual product is meticulously engineered, ensuring exceptional quality and extended lifespan. McFarlane is a distinguished owner of a diverse family of brands, including CJ Aviation, Flight-Resource/MT Props, and Airforms.

Shell Tackles Lifecycle Carbon Emissions Across its Product Portfolio

Shell Aviation has introduced a new lifecycle sustainability approach for its AeroShell aviation lubricants to avoid, reduce and then compensate for lifecycle carbon emissions, improving aircraft performance while helping customers meet their net-zero greenhouse gas (GHG) or carbon emissions ambitions.

In alignment with Shell’s target to become a net-zero-emissions energy business by 2050, AeroShell has confirmed its commitment to continue working to avoid and reduce carbon emissions by optimizing production and product design, embedding circularity into product packaging, improving the energy efficiency of facilities, and using renewable energy to reduce emissions across the supply chain. Shell will then purchase high-quality, independently verified carbon credits to compensate for carbon emissions which are not currently being avoided or reduced.

The new lifecycle sustainability approach will be included as standard across the full AeroShell product range, including turbine engine oils (TEOs), piston engine oils (PEOs), greases and fluids, for both the commercial airline and general aviation markets.

“While SAF and fuel efficiency are rightly highlighted as key levers to decarbonize aviation, for the aviation sector to reach net zero it must address emissions from all aspects of aircraft operations in order to decarbonize — so this means lubricants too, even if they do represent a small proportion of aviation emissions when compared to jet fuel,” said Vincent Begon, general manager aviation lubricants, Shell Aviation. “It is a real point of pride that AeroShell will now support our customers in maintaining aircraft performance while taking action on decarbonization.”

“The fundamentals of lubricants mean that they are challenging to decarbonize, so a lot of effort has gone into developing this new proposition, including working with original equipment manufacturers (OEMs), distributors and other key players across the lubricants industry. This is an important development for our aviation lubricants business, and one that we are confident will provide genuine value for our customers as we support them in decarbonizing.”

Pilatus Aircraft Ltd., a Swiss company developing, producing and selling aircrafts to global customers, many of which are using AeroShell products, are in support of AeroShell’s new lifecycle sustainability approach.

“Shell has a strong track record of developing lubricants that deliver on safety and performance, so it is fantastic to see them continue to push the boundaries of the lubricants market, this time in the name of decarbonization,” said Dr. Urs Thomann, director technologies, processes and sustainability, Pilatus
Aircraft commented.

Aviator Sets Goal to Become Net Zero by 2030

Aviator Sets Goal to Become Net Zero by 2030

Aviator Airport Alliance, a full-range provider of aviation services at 15 airports across the Nordics, has set a goal of becoming net-zero by 2030, cementing the organization’s commitment to sustainability.

“As a group, we have a strategic target of net zero emissions for our operations by 2030, with an even more ambitious goal of reaching carbon neutral by 2026,” explained Jo Alex Tanem, CEO of Aviator Airport Alliance. “We firmly believe that by incorporating sustainable fuel into our operations and transitioning our ground support equipment (GSE) fleet to electric power, we can confidently accomplish this objective.”

In Sweden, Aviator has made progress in transitioning to electric GSE, with the current proportion standing at 65% and continuing to increase annually. Furthermore, Aviator at Malmö Airport has been fossil fuel-free and using only hydrotreated vegetable oil (HVO) fuels since 2021 and Gothenburg-Landvetter Airport joined the fossil-free list at the start of 2023, while Arlanda Airport, currently at 85%, is on track to be fully fossil-free latest by the end of 2024.

“Aside from eliminating fossil fuels from our operations, we have also been focusing on performing fully green turnarounds. In 2021, we performed our first all-electric turnarounds for Ryanair and Norwegian at Arlanda Airport, and at the beginning of this summer, we completed the first all-electric turnaround for Lufthansa at Gothenburg-Landvetter Airport. Each time we complete such tasks, we feel proud to be able to serve our clients with integrity and sustainability on our minds,” Jo Alex Tanem shared.

Aviator has been striving to reduce its impact on the environment for years, introducing sustainable practices into operations. With most of the company’s emissions coming from the usage of vehicles and other equipment when delivering ramp service or de-icing to airline customers, Aviator has been paying special attention to the efficiency of operations and energy saving.

Aviator Airport Alliance is part of Avia Solutions Group, providing aircraft, crew, maintenance and insurance, with a fleet of 180 aircraft. The group also provides various aviation services such as MRO, pilots and crew training, ground handling and other interconnected solutions.